She has starred on the world’s most prestigious opera stages. She has also appeared on “Sesame Street.” She has recorded arias by Mozart and songs by Death Cab for Cutie. She has performed at Buckingham Palace and at the Super Bowl. She starred in a Broadway show (probably the only real flop of her career) and she even sang on the soundtrack for “The Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King.”
It’s that range of work, from the popular to the esoteric, that has earned Renee Fleming the title of “The People’s Diva.”
Fleming will return to Sarasota on Tuesday for a concert at the Van Wezel Performing Arts Hall. It comes almost exactly a year after her Sarasota debut. She performed in concert at Van Wezel last January and also appeared at the Sarasota Orchestra’s annual gala. She had reportedly been eager to perform in Sarasota because the orchestra is led by a female conductor, Anu Tali.
She has the kind of voice that can thrill an opera purist — she’s widely considered one of the greatest sopranos who has ever lived — but she transitions into pop music and jazz flawlessly. According to the Van Wezel publicity material, her local concert will feature “classical songs, opera arias and popular selections from musicals.”